Lazare Grigoriadis Released From Prison

Lazare Grigoriadis, 22, was released from prison on April 24 after President Zurabishvili officially signed the letter of pardon.

Grigoriadis was sentenced to nine years in prison on April 12 on charges of arson of the police vehicle during the March 2023 protests. President Zurabishvili promised to pardon him on the same day, quoting insufficient evidence in the case that many rights defenders considered politically motivated.

Judge Zviad Sharadze, citing a heavy workload in the case, nearly ran out the clock on the 14-day limit on delivery of the court’s verdict, which was only made available today.

In his first comments to reporters after his release, Lazare announced his intention to join the ongoing demonstrations against the foreign agents law. He plans to attend today’s protest.

Grigoriadis, 22, was sentenced on charges of harming the health of a police officer under Part 2 of Article 353 Prima of the Criminal Code and destroying state property under Part 2 of Article 187 of the Criminal Code. Grigoriadis was arrested weeks after the 2023 March 7-9 protests against the so-called Foreign Agents LawThe arrest was viewed as controversial and sparked peaceful protests, as it was viewed as a retribution of the system against youth and civic activists who took part in the March protests. His lawyers and defenders argued that Grigoriadis was innocent and was typecast for his appearance to fit the description of the “satanist” and “disoriented” youth that the ruling party leadership vilified after the protests.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)


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